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Is anyone reading the current series of ‘Red Sonja’?

Riv1

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Re: Is anyone reading the current series of ‘Red Sonja’?
« Reply #225 on: December 21, 2018, 03:56:03 PM »
You’re probably seeing more inconsistencies than me, being more Sonja savby, but even i could tell this wasnt really in character.
Really hoping for a good send off, though!

As an aside, this issue did have some really nice variant covers. Best i can recall in a while.

Sick Nick

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Re: Is anyone reading the current series of ‘Red Sonja’?
« Reply #226 on: January 02, 2019, 03:58:18 AM »
You’re probably seeing more inconsistencies than me, being more Sonja savby, but even i could tell this wasnt really in character.
Really hoping for a good send off, though!

As an aside, this issue did have some really nice variant covers. Best i can recall in a while.

Merry Xmas and Happy New Year!

Yeah, I'm with you on the covers. Usually I'm not a fan but most of the variants were just fantastic. Like I said on DA:

Quote
One thing I forgot to mention in my own review was that IMO this issue has the best collection of variant covers in the series so far. They really are a blinding bunch. It’s hard to pick my favourite but I’d probably opt for Moritat’s, with its cold blues and greys and with a super-strong looking Sonja holding a katana over one shoulder at the forefront. Mandrake’s is tremendous too, though, featuring some kind of wendigo-like snow spirit looming behind the She-Devil in a forest. In both cases, Sonja’s fiery mane really stands out amongst the darker, bleaker tones. The weakest is probably the cosplay cover but the model (whose name I forget) looks more convincing than some we’ve seen so far – she’s English and has been cosplaying Sonja at cons all over South East England for the past year or so. Next issue’s cosplay variant, however, features Tatiana Dekhtyar, who would be a pretty good choice to play the She-Devil in the movie if she were able to act … she looks 100% the part, is an experienced martial artist and even has the right accent.
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Re: Is anyone reading the current series of ‘Red Sonja’?
« Reply #227 on: January 02, 2019, 06:02:24 AM »
Merry Christmas and happy new year in return!

I’m glad it wasnt just me who enjoyed the covers this time out.
I love me some good art dangit. :P

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Re: Is anyone reading the current series of ‘Red Sonja’?
« Reply #228 on: January 02, 2019, 11:07:04 AM »
Merry Christmas and happy new year in return!

I’m glad it wasnt just me who enjoyed the covers this time out.
I love me some good art dangit. :P

For some reason, the variants for the new series aren't anywhere near as good. Frank Cho's done one but it's the very definition of 'phoning it in' ... it looks like he took one of his old covers, traced Sonja's outline and then finished it off in 10 minutes. I
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Re: Is anyone reading the current series of ‘Red Sonja’?
« Reply #229 on: January 02, 2019, 12:03:15 PM »
Frank Cho, the cheesecake king..!

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Re: Is anyone reading the current series of ‘Red Sonja’?
« Reply #230 on: January 02, 2019, 06:22:30 PM »
Hey, a new Conan series just premiered today.
I forgot Marvel got the rights back to the character.
Looked pretty good.

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Re: Is anyone reading the current series of ‘Red Sonja’?
« Reply #231 on: January 03, 2019, 04:19:51 AM »
Cheers, I might take a look. I was worried all the blood and guts would go with Conan going back to Marvel but some of the preview panels I saw looked good.
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Re: Is anyone reading the current series of ‘Red Sonja’?
« Reply #232 on: January 03, 2019, 05:39:09 AM »
I havent read it yet, but the art did look good; seems theyre opting not to use the classic (Buscema) look and style, and i’m okay w. that. I do believe i even saw some exposed boobies, so not the old rated E for everyone version.
I’m familiar w. Jason Aaron, though i havent liked everything he’s written.

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Re: Is anyone reading the current series of ‘Red Sonja’?
« Reply #233 on: January 10, 2019, 07:22:14 AM »
Well...its over.
Interested to hear your opinion on this issue.

For me, it was middle of the road. By no means bad, but not great. It was a good way to start a new arc if they’d been going for that.
The minstrel was interesting, if older than i’d imagined he was going to be. He was more sagacious than anything. Sonja’s philosophical musings on this journey home were fully on display.

Its funny but, for what i’d consider a ‘quiet’ issue, Sonja tallied up a HUGE body count. Didnt notice that at first reading.

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Re: Is anyone reading the current series of ‘Red Sonja’?
« Reply #234 on: January 11, 2019, 11:41:35 AM »
Well...its over.
Interested to hear your opinion on this issue.

For me, it was middle of the road. By no means bad, but not great. It was a good way to start a new arc if they’d been going for that.
The minstrel was interesting, if older than i’d imagined he was going to be. He was more sagacious than anything. Sonja’s philosophical musings on this journey home were fully on display.

Its funny but, for what i’d consider a ‘quiet’ issue, Sonja tallied up a HUGE body count. Didnt notice that at first reading.

Yeah, this was the closest we got to classic War Machine Sonja in the whole of the run ... that was the whole point, though, to get across her violence. Erik Burnham blamed Amy Chu for Sonja's 'sadistic streak' in his commentary here:

https://www.bleedingcool.com/2019/01/10/erik-burnhams-writers-commentary-on-the-red-sonja-25-grand-finale/

From what I've read, Sonja was a lot less hot-tempered and less aggressive before Erik came on board, so it's interesting he said that.

The bard was older than I thought he would be too, and I'd kinda hoped that owing to his age, he might've heard of Red Sonja (remembering she's all but forgotten in this time she's landed in). This wasn't an issue to look at Sonja's place in history though

I'd have loved to have seen a sea adventure for Sonja, those have always been fun in the past but alas it's not to be.

Here's my review from DA, don't say I didn't warn ya!

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So, here we are … the final issue of Amy Chu’s run on ‘Red Sonja’. I’ve enjoyed this probably more than any other Red Sonja run before it. There has been the odd ‘off-issue’, Sonja spent many of the early issues less central than I’d have liked and we haven’t found out much about Sonja’s past. It’s been a magical run overall, though, with superlative art from Carlos Gomez and others and just a deep sense of fun … breezier  than most Sonja runs but that’s OK. Amy’s interest in sci-fi and time travel has manifested itself and she’s brought back the magic and mythology aspects that were largely absent from Gail Simone’s stint, bringing in sorcerers, demons, sphinxes and gods. Amy originally signed on for 6 issues, so hitting 26 is amazing, although she was smart enough to bring in Erik Burnham to help on writing duties halfway through and his involvement made the comic even better.


#25 is a good finish to the series. The story very basic … after reading an advance Uncomicmas review, I was hoping for more examples pitting the She-Devil’s sword vs the musician Tariq’s flute but that would’ve spoiled the surprise of what he could do with his music. I’d thought this tale might reflect the old ‘Wind And The Sun’ fable, where the sun succeeds in forcing a traveller to shed his cloak via gentle warmth where the wind failed with mighty gusts but instead we get just the one instance of comparing the two approaches directly. You could argue the flute didn’t necessarily win out in any case, since all the pirates ended up dead plus Sonja looked well in control during the fight itself – there was just the one panel of the big black pirate lunging at her back with his knife before the musician intervened. The bard asked why the pirates all had to die but in their state, they’d have drowned if Sonja had thrown them overboard. For me, Sonja crying came across as a little cheesy and something Amy had been dying to prise into the comic for ages … was it really necessary? Sonja can be a larger-than-life heroic figure, she doesn’t need that soppy edge. The roguish side of her came across more strongly here than in previous issues and it was easier to buy her operating outside of the law. Amy’s run has also been relatively bloodless and it’s been rare to see the She-Devil slicing and dicing her way through the opposition as she does here, so her violence came across that much more strongly. The exchanges between Sonja and the bard were fun and it was interesting to see the warrior get called on her bloodletting after she uses it to save somebody. She looked affronted and why not?  There’s an interesting bit where Sonja mentions she was a pirate ‘in a past life’ … she could simply be using those words loosely to say she has experience in this line of work but I couldn’t help thinking of Brian Reed’s run, where the ‘Red Sonja’ monicker is passed down through the ages and the identity is assumed by different women to carry on defending the weak and serving the goddess Scathach.

Much to my (and everybody else’s) surprise, regular artist Carlos Gomez is back, after a break of 3 issues, and his art is as amazing as usual. If there’s one thing about this comic that’s really dazzled reviewers, it’s Carlos’ artwork. I like his design for the bandits, although one thing Carlos isn’t great at is distinguishing between different cultures, his designs are often pretty generic fantasy. Tariq has a decent look, almost Biblical but he’s as white as Sonja – you’d expect him to look more Stygian with a name like that. The pirates look like stereotypical corsairs out of a kid’s book with their tricorns and baggy trousers. IIRC, when Conan used to go out on adventures on the high seas, the pirates would more often be bare-chested and wearing more recognisably Hyborian Era garb, and I think the same applied with Sonja’s crew back in Eric Trautmann’s great run. These guys all look like Blackbeard. It’s a minor complaint though. Sonja’s use of a cloak and hood is interesting … doesn’t look like it would provide much in the way of disguise (and why would she need a disguise outside of her own time anyway). Maybe she’s just cold?


Carlos as usual excels on facial expressions, such as Sonja’s shocked surprise at remark Tariq makes about her violent approach to resolving issues, after she took the time out from eating rabbit to save his life. We get loads of combat in this issue, which is an area that’s occasionally been lacking in Amy’s Sonja stories. There’s a nice battle onboard a ship between Sonja and a big group of pirates, although it would’ve been nice to see Sonja swinging around on ropes Douglas Fairbanks Jr-style. As it is, in terms of choreography, Carlos tends to use most of the tried-and-true moves he’s used in the past, such as the She-Devil nailing opponents with flying kicks or swinging a sword with one hand and punching out some brute with another but to be fair, many artists have a limited repertoire when it comes to fight choreography. There's one great panel showing her leaping in the air, knees tucked in, as she buries her sword up to the hilt into a pirate. One thing Carlos does well in all his fight scenes is convey Sonja’s speed and agility … she looked like a dynamo here, whirring through the enemy ranks untouchable. She handles pairs of opponents offpanel with sickening ease and is clearly leagues beyond any of these guys as a warrior. Would’ve been cool to have seen a demonstration of the She-Devil’s strength as well, hurling a few people overboard but you can’t have everything.


All told, this was really a meat-and-potatoes issue that didn’t do anything outstanding but it was well-written and the art was tremendous. Far from the best issue in the series but the solo adventures closing out this run have been entertaining and have made a nice change from the giant epics that preceded them, particularly if you count issues #0-16 as one big arc. I’m really going to miss this comic but it’s time for a big change next month with the relaunch and new team of Mark Russell and Mirko Colak.


Special mention to :iconredsonjaart: who has slavishly reviewed every issue in this run … I’ve really enjoyed the discussions I’ve had with him throughout.

Hyrkanian Badass



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Re: Is anyone reading the current series of ‘Red Sonja’?
« Reply #235 on: January 11, 2019, 10:13:58 PM »
That was nice review, and review.
I’ll miss this monthly conversation. Thanks again for turning me on to this series!

Sick Nick

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Re: Is anyone reading the current series of ‘Red Sonja’?
« Reply #236 on: January 14, 2019, 04:22:26 AM »
That was nice review, and review.
I’ll miss this monthly conversation. Thanks again for turning me on to this series!

No problem. I know you're not picking up the new series but I'm gonna give it a few issues ... people have high hopes for it.

It's been emotional (*wipes away tear*)
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Re: Is anyone reading the current series of ‘Red Sonja’?
« Reply #237 on: January 14, 2019, 06:20:27 AM »
We’ll always have Paris!

Sick Nick

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Re: Is anyone reading the current series of ‘Red Sonja’?
« Reply #238 on: February 11, 2019, 04:46:28 AM »
My review of #1 of the new series, lifted from a chat on DA:

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I REALLY enjoyed this. As you say, Mirko’s style is something that hasn’t been seen in Sonja for ages … Liam Sharp’s probably the closest but he had the annoying habit of drawing Sonja in a thong. It’s a more realistic, sophisticated style but it absolutely suited the story. The sandy and brown shades throughout also contrasted vividly with Sonja’s crimson mane.

This was a good set-up issue, which balanced the time given to Sonja and her antagonists really well. There was plenty of comedy in there in the way that Dragan demanded fealty from his new vassals, the message that Sonja sent the Emperor and the offhand remark about Hyrkanian cooking methods, but there was plenty of horror too. I’ve drawn comparisons before with the real life Vlad Tepes, whose nickname was close to ‘Dragan’, but the whole spiel about hostages being taken back to Zamora and raised there as slave-soldiers reminded me of the Turkish Empire and Vlad’s own background, where he suffered this fate himself.

Given Mark’s comments about Sonja only being the main member of a big ensemble cast, I was pleasantly surprised to see how much screentime she got here, and we’ve already had a couple of flashes into her background, which is more than we ever really got from Amy. Sonja’s speech marks her out as low-born, somebody who’d be initially uncomfortable wearing the mantle of Queen, although I’m sure she’ll grow into it with time and her actions on the battlefield will establish her as the best possible choice. While Sonja doesn’t quite have the elegant speech patterns of Roy Thomas, Michael Oeming or Amy’s versions, I’m glad Mark stopped short of giving her Gail Simone’s 21st century knowing colloquialisms and wisecracks. We got a nice display of her fighting prowess … Mark’s Sonja is interesting, in that she doesn’t seem to be quite the unstoppable war machine that Amy or Oeming’s She-Devils were but she’s a smarter and more pragmatic fighter. She outright says that there will always be somebody who’s better so combat is all about using your brain and outthinking your opponent. The whole thing about Domo constantly beating her in training makes me think there’s no vow yet, or at least the vow might have different wording.

Good to see the blood back in ‘Red Sonja’ as well, with some really visceral panels that are only made stronger by Mirko’s ‘uncartoonish’ style of art.

This was a strong start to the series and it’s only going to improve from here. There’s massive potential to be found with this creative team.

Anyone who has dismissed Sonja as a cheesecake bad girl character in the past will probably get more out of this series than its predecessors ... it's going to be much more sophisticated, you can tell that much from the first issue. Although, SPOILER ALERT, Sonja will be back in the scalemail bikini in a few issues' time...
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Re: Is anyone reading the current series of ‘Red Sonja’?
« Reply #239 on: February 12, 2019, 05:14:53 AM »
Excellent review!

I took a look at the issue, and the art at least, looked really nice. I did wonder why Sonja was wearing a potato sack, so the news of the chainmail return is good to hear!